A new antibacterial drug in development


Due to the overuse of antibiotics, bacteria around the world are developing increasing resistance to antibiotics. The Flemish biotech company and the spin-off Aelin Therapeutics are working on a solution.

It has long been recognised that there is a problem with antibiotic resistance and that it is gradually becoming a global curse. If we do not act urgently, it will be difficult to maintain our healthcare system. We then risk finding ourselves as defenceless as we were when there were no antibiotics. Even today, routine operations carry an increased risk due to the mutation of bacteria encountered in the hospital environment. This makes it more difficult to control bacterial infections and patient mortality is increasing. Fortunately, there is also a growing awareness in medical and political circles, such as the G7. The World Health Organization (WHO) fears an annual death toll of 10 million by 2050 if no solution is found.


However, there is real hope. The biotech company Aelin Therapeutics and the universities KU Leuven, VUB and Ghent University can see the opportunity for a complete change of direction. Together, they are working on a whole new class of drugs.  Unlike conventional medication, these drugs do not attack the cell wall of the bacteria first, but instead cause toxic proteins to clump together inside at lightening speed, thus killing the bacteria. Another advantage is that this innovative technology can be used to fight other diseases, such as cancer. Promising prospects for attracting investors!